MI6 rounds up the news from the "Quantum of Solace" press conference held in Chile last week, plus talk of the 23rd James Bond film...

Production Diary (22)
7th April 2008

Being Creative
When Marc Forster signed up to become the youngest 007 director in the history of the franchise, he was quick to stamp his own vision on the 22nd James Bond film (later titled "Quantum of Solace") - including replacing some early script concepts. Despite the changes, Forster still has to work within the Bond template. "But I like it because you feel like it can make you very creative," he told reporters. "And a lot of interesting things come out of that. Because, if you look at filmmakers that worked under politically repressive regimes, [they] made sometimes really interesting movies."

Finding A Balance
When the title of the film was first revealed, cast and crew were estimating that there was roughly twice as much action that the previous outing "Casino Royale". But how to strike a balance between story and action?

Daniel Craig explained to press in Chile: "We're not making a kitchen sink drama here. We are making a Bond movie. What Marc wanted and the producers and what I wanted is to bring back a visual flair to the movie, so that every frame in every shot that we see is beautiful. And there may be things exploding, but they're good to look at."

"We're making a Bond film, but we need some reality. We need to do more. It's not like we're making some sort of big action romance here. This is a Bond movie first of all. You have to apply the Bond equation, which is that we have to have as much action as we possibly can that fits in with the story, which makes sense. But the reality of the situations and... people's emotions is kind of important because we want an audience to kind of care and just to get involved and stay interested. "


Revenge, Retribution, Redemption...
Long-running rumours, initially fuelled by actress Eva Green, said that Vesper Lynd's boyfriend may appear as the villain 007 is chasing in "Quantum of Solace". This was shot down by producers during the press conference, but the thread or revenge and Bond settling a score is still very much at the heart of the story. Craig elaborated on the theme: "It's kind of Bond's journey into, at first we think it's vengeance, but it goes somewhere else. They've killed the love of his life, this organization, and we don't know who this organization are, and he needs to find out who they are. And it's for personal reasons but also professional reasons."

"He has lost the love of his life and the last thing he knows is that she was a double agent. She sold him out. The relationship that he was looking at was just a lie. So he has got this little kind of a spark inside him that, although he does not want to admit, he needs to find out. Without that he is not going to function properly. So definitely, this movie is about beginning that discovery.

"There's a theme in the movie, which is about shortages in the world and how people are abusing them and this sets it up quite nicely really."

No Pain, No Gain
Keen to carry on doing as much of the stunt sequences "as insurance allows", Craig has been keeping even busier on his second outing as 007. "I'm bruised up from the fight scenes, but that's part of the deal," Craig told reporters. "I wouldn't have done the movie without going all the way." When quizzed about his relentless fitness and health routine, Craig joked, "It's just not very Bond-like. Bond should be able to do ten press-ups, then smoke 60 cigarettes, and then drink a bottle of something and pop a pill, I think."


Bond's Inner Psyche
Director Marc Forster explained the choice of the desolate and baron location for the climax of the film epitomised the "isolation and loneliness" that Bond is feeling. "He is an assassin, he is a secret agent, and that reflects a certain lifestyle, which is lonely. I think that is what is going on within Bond, the psychological phase he is going through." said Forster. "Locations are characters themselves."


The filming which wrapped last week in Chile centred on the Cerro Paranal observatory, which villain Dominic Greene (played by Mathieu Amalric, pictured opposite) has chosen as headquarters for his 'Quantum' operations. "Look outside. This genuinely does not exist anywhere else on earth." Craig said.

"This was a special week," said Frank Ruseler, administrator of Paranal, "We always receive visitors from the press, but this commotion is something new." Part of the agreement for the use of the location is that all filming is completed in daylight, as the scientific programmes use the telescopes twenty minutes after sunset. "Last year, sometime around September or October, I received a letter with the letterhead of 007," recalled Tim de Zeeuw, director general of the science centre. "At first I thought it was a joke."

Forster explained the balance between the action and drama in the film's climax: "If you have an action sequence you have to tell a story, because drama and action go hand in hand. And I think one inspires the other. If you don’t have a story with the action, then the action is empty.

Bond 23
Producer Michael G. Wilson told reports he expected the Bond machine to take a rest bite after work on "Quantum of Solace" is completed later this year. Wilson said he expects to pause for at least a year, meaning the 23rd James Bond film may be released later than the expected two year cycle. "I need a break for a little while," he said.

Director Marc Forster confirmed he will not be back for Bond 23. "If I would ever do a big movie again in that size," he said, "it has to be my own franchise, which I would create from scratch, which I would cast, create the look and really create the franchise on my own."

How about 007 himself? "I want them to stand alone and be good films," Craig said. "As long as that continues, then we'll keep making them. And if it doesn't, then we'll stop."


  • Forster, on the style of the film - "I want to go back to the 60s and 70s thriller look."
  • Craig, on the modern villain - "I think what it is is looking at places that are potentially weak, somewhere where there is a destabilised place that ... bad guys, whatever the nationality, can take advantage of."
  • Wilson, on the controversy over the poor relations between Chile and Bolivia who fought a way from 1879-1884 - "We knew there was a war 100 years ago, but we didn't know it was still an issue."
  • Craig, on the gadgets - "The Aston Martin's there, and that's still the best gadget we have."
  • Amalric, on working with what he's got - "No scars, no eye that bleeds, no metal jaw. I tried everything to have something to help me. I said to Marc: No nothing? A beard? 'No.' Can I shave my hair? 'No. Just your face."
  • Kurylenko, on her character not getting to smooch 007 - "Why would I be disappointed? I'm just doing my work.

Plot Spoilers
During the reporters visit to the set, the crew were filming scenes from the movie's climax. "Offices and a lodge underneath one of the world's largest telescopes at Paranal Observatory acted as an eco-hotel, used by the villain", said Reuters. According to producer Barbara Broccoli, the building would be re-created back in London, "in order for it to be blown up." Scenes were filmed of Craig firing into the skylight above the offices, and Kurylenko's character Camille running separately off the roof of the building, flipping into a balcony. Amalric, playing the villain Dominic Greene, roamed the set in post-Bond fight makeup, bloodied and bruised on his cheeks. One report revealed how it all ends for the villain: "after getting the bad end of his own ax in a fight, a bloodied villain limps alone in a stark desert. Mathieu Amalric stumbles to the red, rocky ground. "CUT!" rings loudly from the set"